As the News Breaks …
While the news broke this morning about the Supreme Court's ruling on President Obama's health care law, a concurrent story was unfolding in real time: the rush to be first with the news, and the inevitable missteps that follow when speed is put ahead of accuracy.
This time it was CNN, which initially reported the essential provision of the law, the individual mandate, was struck down by the court. But they were dreadfully wrong. As the Huffington Post reports, a CNN correspondent only read the first part of the ruling, which said the Commence Clause could not be used to uphold the law. Later in the ruling, the court said it could stand as a tax.
Also initially getting it wrong: Fox News, The Drudge Report, and a few politicians, whom New York magazine reports had to delete initial tweets about the ruling.
Taking a radically different approach was the New York Times, which just after 10 a.m. issued a statement befitting the newspaper of record:
"The Supreme Court has ruled on President Obama’s health-care overhaul, and Times reporters and editors are analyzing the decision. Once we are comfortable with its basic meaning, you can expect a torrent of coverage."